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Forgotten Love - A Devotion

Forgotten Love - A Devotion
Forgotten Love - A Devotion
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I John 4:7-8 (NLT)
Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

God is love. Somehow in the rigmarole of trying to earn righteousness and build churches, I think we have forgotten the vast potential of His Love as the Body of Jesus Christ. We are creating organizations as churches split and set out to conquer the world, but what are we really accomplishing with splintered relationships and divided interests. There is only one God. He is love. There is no other thing that can fill the voids in our life although we are still on a quest to find it. Churches are now corporations but the Body of Christ never was intended to be big business just a committed relationship between God and His Beloved People. How can we be at peace with preachers who do not touch the people? Where are the teachers who will not just talk but demonstrate the Love of God that they so eagerly profess? Where is the love? I think it has been forgotten. I am just as guilty as the next. Headed out to run errands the other day, my youngest daughter noticed a homeless man on the side of the road with a sign written on cardboard, “Anything Helps”. She said with desperation, “Mom, we have to do something! Give him some money.” I didn’t have any cash in my wallet and not even a bottle of fresh water in my car like I used to. My heart was heavy with conviction. She went on to explain that the Lord wants us to take care of those people. Wow, out of the mouth of babes. Have we built such perfect institutions that the sign “whosoever will let them come” has been covered up? Have I become so engrossed in having God’s Best that I have forgotten how to get it? Have I forgotten to live on love and let God do the rest? There is no condemnation in God’s Love so do not be ashamed if you have lost the conviction to love others as Christ loves you, I have done the very same thing. Thankfully, we have His Word as a testimony that will revive our hearts again.

I John 4:9-10 (NLT)
God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

God did His Part in expressing His Love and Compassion for His People. Jesus Christ came to this world to show us real love. Who would give their own life let alone the life of a beloved child for people bent on rebellion, disobedience and hatred? No one that I know except the Lord. I certainly would not give my child’s life to save another. Real love is the willingness to give everything we are and ever hope to be into cultivating a prospering relationship with everyone that we meet. God showed us exactly how much He loves us by sending His One and Only Son into the world to secure our relationship through righteousness with Him forever. What are you doing to share His Love with others?

John 3:16-19 (NLT)
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil.”

God’s Love does not have a contingency clause. It is not if you do this, I will do this. God is love. God loves us. He sent His Son to fully express God’s Love and make a way for us to have it. Sin was the obstacle between us and God. Jesus washed it all away. He covers us with righteousness in order that we can come boldly into His Presence and accept all of His Amazing Love. We enter a covenant relationship with the Lord just like marriage. God did not come to condemn the world or judge it therefore there is no other expectation of us other than to love God back. This is the reality that can only be accepted by faith and confident hope because it is completely contradictory to the way that the world loves by taking. God just gives us love and most of the time, we don’t understand so we have no idea how to use it. God gives us the choice of whether or not we love Him back. We determine if His Love is for us. (Deuteronomy 30:19-20) All He wants from us is our love in return. (Deuteronomy 10:12) Sounds too good to be true so most people are afraid to enter such a relationship with the Lord. The only way for you as a human being to face judgment is to refuse God’s Love. It is not about what you do or what you say. When I married my husband, my last name changed and so did my system of beliefs. I was no longer looking for love but found it. I did not pursue other relationships with the passion and commitment that I have with my husband in our marriage. That would be adultery. I am faithful to Him because I love and respect him as my husband by choice. I agreed to do it freely and to live in covenant with him. It is no different when we choose the Love of God. It changes our heart because we now have accept His Love. The only way to face judgment or be permanently separated from His Love is to reject it. Sadly, there are many people today who have rejected the Love of God based on the church and all its people. We cannot accept the unconditional love of Christ because we do not have faith in the Lord or trust Him. Therefore, we cannot love others because we have forgotten His Love.

Romans 8:31-34 (NLT)
What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.

Love covers a multitude of sins. (I Peter 4:8) When I read this, it tells me that if I can learn to love like Jesus does sin will not stop me – mine or anyone else’s. God is for us – individually and corporately. He did not spare any expense to show us how very much that He loves us. The enemy wants to make us think that when we don’t get it right the first time that God is disappointed or mad. He is not mad. Grace is evidence that the Lord took into consideration our shortcomings. He knows our weaknesses and took them to the Cross. They are covered in His Blood and washed away. Not only that, but Jesus sits at the Right Hand of God constantly reminding Him of how very much He loves us! No one can condemn you so you can love everyone no matter how unlovable they are once you are confident that God loves you! In every situation, God is working it out for our own good because of that love. He just wants us to accept it and to confident in it.

Romans 8:35-37 (NLT)
Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

We are in this world but not of this world. We have eternity planted in our heart so we long for that place regardless of whether or not we are saved. (Ecclesiastes 3:11) Everyone is looking for love and those who find it are giving the ability to love back. No matter what situations you are facing or trials that you are going through, it does not mean that God does not love you or is mad at you. Nothing could be further from the truth, but if you will cling to the Love of God whose Name is Jesus Christ, you will experience the full abundance of God’s Love for you.

Romans 8:38-39 (NLT)
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

We must learn to accept God’s Love. By doing so we become convinced that nothing can EVER separate us from it. We do not have fear anymore because we know that He loves us and overwhelming victory is ours in every situation. Faith grows, develops and matures into confident hope that changes our outcomes into the good things that He has promised. This is only available to those who choose God’s Love and live intent on experiencing it. We become unshakeable and immovable when we remember how much God loves us in Jesus Christ. This revelation knowledge causes us to catch hold of the Lord who has been reaching out to us since the beginning of time.

I Corinthians 13:4-7 (NLT)
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

This is the basic definition of God’s Love for us and how we are to love others. It is a constant reminder of how far we have fallen away from love in this world. When this kind of love becomes the exception to the rule, we have a problem. We are to love God with all our heart. (Deuteronomy 6:4-6) We are to love Jesus. (John 14:23-24) We are to love His Spirit. (Romans 5:5; 2 Corinthians 6:6) We are to love others including our enemies. (John 14:34-35; Matthew 5:43-44) We must learn to love ourselves. (Ephesians 3:1-5) By doing so, we allow God’s Love to grow and prosper in our life. His Spirit produces love in us. (Galatians 5:22) We can give love cheerfully for in doing so we understand that we will never be separated or without love so we have a constant overflowing supply. (2 Corinthians 9:6-8) When the Lord promised to give back to us “pressed down, shaken together and running over”, He was not talking about money but love. (I Corinthians 13:13) When we choose to apply the Grace that we have been given to others, to be merciful even when we are right, and to effectively communicate God’s Love to others, He will gives joy, love, and peace as we begin to experience the victory that His Glory brings us.

Colossians 2:1-3 (NLT)
I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and for the church at Laodicea, and for many other believers who have never met me personally. I want them to be encouraged and knit together by strong ties of love. I want them to have complete confidence that they understand God’s mysterious plan, which is Christ himself. In him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

The Spirit of the Lord that lives in us is love. We must fan the flame of passion, feed the fire with His Word and choose to love others. We are to be knit together not torn apart. God will not tolerate a people who are lukewarm or indifferent when it comes to love. (Revelation 3:14-22) In the Book of Revelation, the Lord revisits the Church of Laodicea and warns of indifference and apathy in the hearts of believers. Apathy is indifference, the absence of passion, emotion or excitement, or a lack of interest. What you are interested in – you will seek out. If you desire a relationship with God you must pursue Him with passion, emotion, excitement and enthusiasm. You must seek to know Him more so there is an establishment of intimacy. The Holy Spirit consummates our relationship with God through Jesus Christ. He tells us God’s Secrets and makes His Way plain so that we will experience the life that the Lord planned for us so long ago. (Psalm 139:16; Jeremiah 29:11-12) We must learn to seek out His Love wholeheartedly (Jeremiah 29:13) so that we can experience its vast parameters. The Spirit enables us to be a conduit of His Love to the watching, waiting and wondering world. (Colossians 1:8)

Ephesians 3:18-20 (NLT)
And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.

God loves you. (Period) What you decide to do with His Love is up to you. You have been given the freedom of choice again by His Great Love, Mercy and Grace born of His Compassion and Passion for you – His Beloved. We must be careful that our love for God, Jesus, His Spirit, the Church, other people including our enemies and even ourselves does not run cold. God does not tolerate lukewarm affection and mediocre commitment because He desires an intimate relationship with you today. He wants to pour His Love so thick in our lives that we have to give it away just to survive. This does not happen if we withhold it from others. Have you forgotten love today? If we focused more on God’s Love and less on earning His Favor, we would experience the fullness of God including those things which are more than we can think or ask. We would stop looking to the world and all its people and things for satisfaction because we would be complete and content in every situation. The more we seek the Lord with all our heart, our mind and our soul, the greater our capacity to love. Apple created a thing called ICloud. My IPhone has limited storage. But when I choose to use the application called ICloud it expands my ability to store and process data because it is now saved to a much larger network. When we decide to connect with God’s Love and allow it to expand our capacity to love others even learning to love ourselves, we are given a greater capacity so that we not consume us but run through us. God’s Love for us is immeasurable and uncontainable but when I connect my life with His Plan, I am given the ability to become a conduit for His Love. I cannot contain it so it overflows in my life. I have nothing to fear because He just keeps pouring it on. When I fall down, it is His Love that lifts me back up. When I fall short, it is His Love that settles the difference. When I need something, it is His Love that provides it. When I am alone, His Love is my comfort. When I am weak, it makes me strong. His Love is everything and without it I have nothing. If you have forgotten His Love today, be reminded. If you have turned from it, run back to it. If you want it, it belongs to you! Don’t forget God’s Love for you today! His Love is all that you need, more than you can think of and exceedingly above all that you could ever ask for! He doesn’t want you to forget!

Ephesians 3:16-17 (NLT)
I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.